Everything about an accident is upsetting, except maybe that the car insurance coverage will pay for the medical bills and vehicle damage. You will, however, be shuttered when you realize the driver at fault does not have proper insurance coverage.
Here is how to go about an accident with an uninsured driver.
How Does Uninsured Motorist Coverage Operate?
Even though the law requires all registered vehicles to have insurance policies, some drivers operate without one. They only use the policy for clearance then cancel it.
With most insurance companies privy to this information, they tend to offer uninsured motorist (UIM) coverage as add-on protection. The UIM policy covers the losses that result from accidents involving uninsured motorists.
The UIM coverage is strict on the type of accidents it covers. Consult with your insurance company immediately you get involved in the accident to know if your policy covers the situation.
Some of the covered instances include; when hit by a hit-and-run driver, when hit by a car that is not yours, or when you are a passenger and the driver at fault doesn’t have an insurance cover. The cover can also protect you when you are hit as a pedestrian.
The policy does not include accidents where there is no contact. For example, you won’t be compensated when the offending vehicle cuts in front of your car, causing you to veer off the road and cause an accident without any physical contact with the other vehicle.
What to do When Involved in an Accident with an Uninsured Driver
Lacking insurance is an offense, and the offending driver would, in most cases, discourage you from following the proper channels. However, doing everything right is the best way to get compensation.
Call the police to assess the situation and write a report. The police report will come in handy when making claims for expenses incurred from the accident.
There is a likelihood the other driver will offer you money to avoid fines and fees from the legal repercussions. Don’t accept the money as, at this point, you are never sure if it’s enough for the damages and injury expenses.
Collect as much information as possible. Line up witnesses to ascertain the cause of the accident. You will also need the offending driver’s contacts to verify details and any other information later on. Collect information on the vehicle’s make and model, the time of the accident, and the responding police details.
Lastly, take pictures of the accident scene. Capture damage on the vehicles involved in the accident, traffic signs, direction the vehicle was traveling, and the other driver’s license plate.
Filing for a lawsuit against an uninsured driver
Your insurance policy, in most cases, would cover damages to your car and minor medical expenses. The only concern is in case of serious injuries that require a lot of money or lifelong treatment. The best option in such a case is to consult a personal injury lawyer to understand your options.
The lawyer will help you file a lawsuit after a car accident with an uninsured driver and get enough compensation for your expenses. They will obtain the necessary evidence to prove fault.
The lawyer will also organize medical records and bills and work with your doctors to obtain detailed medical information. In the end, the lawyer will negotiate a satisfactory settlement from your insurance company.
Handling an accident involving an uninsured driver by yourself has less winning chances. The offending driver is likely to offer you little money that won’t cover your expenses. Taking the offending driver to court is also not helpful as they won’t have the money to pay even if you win.
Your best way out is to consult an experienced personal injury lawyer to get the proper claim from your insurance company.